If you are working on your essays for the upcoming Rotman deadline, you should listen to the tips and advice the school is sharing. The Rotman MBA Admissions Committee did a great job talking about what they are looking to read (or not read) in your essays.

1. What is your post-MBA career goal and why do you think this career would be a good match? How will the Rotman MBA help you to achieve your goal? (Please limit your answer to 500 words.)
Analysis: This is the most common “Why MBA,” “Why Rotman,” “Why Now” question. The challenge is to make this answer specific to your background, and what Rotman has to offer. Rotman MBA’s Admissions team’s emphasis on “why you think this career would be a good match” is just a reminder for you to tie everything together – your experience, your passion, and your skills.
2. Tell us about a time when you had to overcome an obstacle and describe the outcome.  (Please limit your answer to 250 words.)
Analysis: it is very difficult to describe a complex situation and how you have handled it in under 250 words. When you develop this essay, I recommend starting with a longer version – write in detail about the situation, how you analyzed it, the options  you had, your decision-making process, and finally – the outcome. After you have the full story, you can start editing it down, keeping just the core information. I find that many students spend over half the space on the set-up – avoid this! Try to describe the situation in a nutshell and let your actions and analysis provide whatever additional information is needed.
3. Video essay: The Rotman School is introducing a new video essay component as a pilot project in our admissions process this year. You will be asked two questions; both questions are designed to be answered without any advance preparation and will allow us to get to know you, your personality, interests, passions, and talents much better than we could in a written essay. 
Analysis: While there isn’t much info about this new video format Rotman is using, this is anything but a traditional MBA essay. While other schools (NYU and UCLA, for example) enable students to create videos of themselves, this is a different story altogether. You are being asked to answer pre-recorded questions in a real-time video. I wonder how many people did not apply to Rotman MBA this year, just out of fear of not doing well in this set-up (we will have to wait until application data is available to find out). While Rotman’s Admission Committee did their best to tell people this is not a make-or-break part of the application, and that you just need to be yourself, it is a little bit scary talking to yourself (and the webcam). You want to prepare for this; think of some likely topics and tape yourself talking about them with your webcam  then watch the tape and see how you can improve your delivery (from adjusting your posture to slowing your pace). You might want to prepare with someone and get some feedback.
Let us help you with your Rotman MBA application. Contact our admissions experts to talk about your application and get ready for the deadline.
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